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Therabody RecoveryAir PRO review

The Therabody RecoveryAir Pro recovery boots aim to help speed up recovery post-session or race. Here's our thoughts on them...

Our rating 
4.7 out of 5 star rating 4.7
£1,129
therabody recoveryair pro boots

The Therabody RecoveryAir Pro recovery boots are made up of four chambers, which work by using gradient, pneumatic compression on the legs.

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This is designed to increase circulation as well as lymphatic drainage, in order to decrease muscle fatigue by reducing DOMS and inflammation from hard sessions.

Setting up the boots is pretty self-explanatory: simply unravel the connecter hoses at each foot and slot them into the control machine, then zip yourself in. They’re also much less bulky than other boots we’re tried, and can be packed away relatively concisely, which is a big plus for us.

Making sense of modes

The boots have several different pre-set modes to choose from, which are accessed via simple navigational buttons on the control device. The modes depend on what kind of recovery you’re after and which section of the legs need more attention. These modes include recovery, warm-up, isolation, interval and pro.

Recovery mode was one we found ourselves reaching for the most as it’s simple and easy to set up. Simply choose a duration from 10mins to 90mins, or continual, and a pressure ranging from 20 to 100mmHg.

After setting these, you can decide how long you want the compression cycle to hold (essentially squeeze) the leg for, and how long you want the release to take – we opt for maximum hold of 10s and minimum release of 10s.

There’s also an option to customise the pressure inside each of the four chambers of the boot (you normally want more pressure at the extremities and less as you travel up closer to the heart as this blood has less distance to go).

Warm-up mode has a similar set-up to recovery, and you can choose how long you want to boost the legs for before a session.

This is where it gets technical, the isolation mode has you choose which area of the leg you want to pin-point for targeted compression, along with the duration, pressure and hold/release times.

Interval mode has the additional option to have the boots on and off for a personalised amount of time and at a specific pressure, though we didn’t find ourselves using this mode much as opposed to having a mode with more constant compression.

Lastly there’s pro mode, this is where you can also choose what kind of inflation cycle you want (sequential, wave, isolation, or flow) for a fully customised recovery session.

Much help for weary legs?

Therabody also has the boots set up on the app, with the idea that you can connect via Bluetooth and choose from a selection of pre-made sessions. However, this option isn’t quite fully functioning yet, and Therabody says fully connectivity will arrive soon.

All in all, we thoroughly enjoyed using the RecoveryAir Pros during our recovery. We used them over a period of several months, including when we wanted to treat sore legs after a marathon and ultra-marathon. They certainly seemed to reduce our normal recovery times and kept our legs energised throughout training blocks.

Compared to the competition, we found the control device much more logical and easy to use, while it’s got many more functions and customisation is huge. Battery’s good (seeming to match a claimed 240mins) and the boots are neat and look smart, coming in small, medium and large to be accessible for a wide range of athletes.

We’d recommend the RecoveryAir Pro to all athletes who’re in search of a little extra help in their recovery routine. Endurance athletes will particularly benefit from the boots to keep the legs feeling fresh.

Lastly, the elephant in the room…. Yes, they’re expensive. There’s no denying that. But if you can afford the spend, the RecoveryAir Pro would make a useful addition to any triathlete’s gear.

Verdict: Useful recovery device for athletes with high training volume, but there’s no avoiding that price tag…

Score: 93%

Purchase the RecoveryAir PRO from Therabody

For a more budget option, also consider…

Renpho Massage Device

Credit: Amazon

For a more wallet-friendly option, these Renpho recovery boots are designed to massage and compress the feet, calves, and thighs with the aim to help with pain relief and boost relaxation.

Renpho says that using the boots for ’20 minutes or twice daily can relax muscle fatigue’. They’ve got six modes and four massage intensities which can be altered via a remote control.

What’s unique about these boots is that you put them on via wraps, which can be adjusted for all different sizes. This means that you can also choose to only use the calf or the foot wrap if you want to isolate one muscle group.

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The boots also automatically turn off after 20 minutes for convenience, safety and to save power. The included storage bag is designed to make them extra portable and easy to stow away.